This week, Emily and I had the pleasure of attending the 5th Annual Taste of Sunnyside, the neighborhood’s premier tasting event. Organized by the Sunnyside Shines organization, with the mission to “enhance Sunnyside’s commercial district on Queens Blvd and Greenpoint Avenue,” the event was a huge success–entertaining many enthusiastic residents and visitors with delicious local food.
Held in a tented area underneath the 46th Street subway stop, the event was easy to get to and really well attended. I was surprised by how packed it got in its prime hour, as Emily and I strategically weaved in and out of the tables to ensure we got the best of everything.
Aside from all the food, there was also live music, which was one of the highlights of my experience. Not only did Flor de Tolache, the all female Mariachi band play an awesome set, the subway jazz band Ten and Change really brought down the house with their rendition of Cab Calloway’s Heidi Heidi Heidi Ho.
And now…on to the food!
The fiery red bean chili, courtesy of Aubergine Cafe had stunning flavor, heat and a little crunch from the chips on top. Even though we had a small tasting portion, it was incredibly hearty and filling.
Next came the eats from Bucharest Restaurant, which reminded me of the summer vacations my family used to take in Romania. Tasting a plate of assorted foods such as stuffed grape leaves with the filling that my mom would put in her stuffed cabbage, a white bean dip (sort of like hummus but lighter) and classic cevapi (aka minced meat kebab), it was awesome!
The fact that I haven’t yet been to Salt & Fat made me that much more eager to try their food. Their set up was downright gourmet, with two guys diligently assembling beautiful plates of pork terrine, topped with pickled onions, arugula, grain mustard and salmon roe. The latter ingredient was most interesting and gave the dish a sushi-like quality.
The meatballs from Quaint were also tasty, the smoky tomato sauce being my favorite ingredient. I loved their bite size, which was just perfect for this tasting event.
Ending things off with Venturo’s (and Vesta of course) Baby Jesus Cake was a delight, as the gooey butterscotch sauce hugged the generous piece of cake and basically had us licking our plate clean.
We’d like to thank Sunnyside Shines for putting on a great event and for whetting our appetite to try these restaurants in the near future.